Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Who stands where on the Latitzia appointment vote

OK this blog is for the hardcore students of JJOKE, those that study JJOKE meetings like it was a new term of the Supreme Court.  In other words me.  I want to make some notes about where each commissioner stands on the Latitzia appointment and why.

I've learned that Horwitz thought he had the majority of votes he needed to appoint Latitzia and was going to do it in executive session.  Milgram had already cryptically leaked to a couple of media folks that the real news from the meeting would come in the form of an announcement after the meeting.

But when certain legislative appointees figured out what was coming they took my advice (given thru multiple sources and cutouts) and threatened to make a motion to discuss the appointment in public.

Horwitz blinked, changed his drawers and decided to have another conversation but no vote in executive session.

Next time the legislative appointees ought to nominate Latizia in public session force a vote and let the chips fall where they may.

Anyway here is where I think each commissioner stands based on my observations, conversations with current and former commissioners and sundry other spies both in and out of government.

Cuomo appointees in favor of Latitzia:

Dan Horwitz - Dan has stated prior to Latitzia being promoted by the 2nd floor that he did not think any present JJOKE staffer could or should replace Biben.  Then he got a phone call and now he will move heaven and earth to get Latitzia the votes she needs.

Uncle Vinny DeIorio - Uncle Vinny has bills to pay.  He got his niece rehired and his lawfirm has clients that appear before state agencies.  A solid yes vote for Latitzia and maybe willing to get his hands dirty to get it done.

David Arroyo - Too new to do anything but follow Horwitz's lead.  A solid yes vote for now.

Mitra Hormozi - Get along and go along at this point.  Working in Steve Cohen's law firm makes her a team player.  She will swallow hard and vote for Latitzia and hope no one notices.  My bet for the next commissioner to resign.

Seymor Knox - Lets play golf.  Once he realizes who Latitzia is and what job she wants he will do as he is told.  Makes him a yes vote if he gets off the golf course in time to vote.

Cuomo appointees on the fence when it comes to Latitzia:

Gary Lavine - With Bulgaro gone the smartest commissioner left.  Intellectually knows Latitzia is not right for the job.  Has been keeping his head in the sand.  What he doesn't know about the process lets him sleep at night.  Would love for Latitzia to withdraw or garner enough support so he is just one of the crowd.  Force a public vote and he will be a no unless its unanimous.

Legislative appointees on the fence when it comes to Latitzia:

Mary Lou Rath - She knows the game if Dean says yes she is a yes.

Joe Covello - Lets have fun commissioner.  Getting tired of the BS.  I didn't sign on for this stress. The  I don't care vote if I have to.

Leshann DeArcy and David Renzi- Prior to yesterdays meeting I would have said the most likely yes votes.  They are the representatives of the Senate Dems and Assembly republicans so normally no one pays attention to them.  Should have been an easy sell for Horwitz.  But something has gone wrong and they turned into the most vocal leaders of the legislative voting bloc. 

Legislative appointees who will not vote for Latitzia:

Marvin Jacobs and Ellen Yaroshefsy - They have lived with what happens to their appointing authority when a Cuomo controlled Executive Director is running JJOKE.  Never again.  I bet they wish they took the advice to resign in mass with Pat.

George Weissman - With Bulgaro gone the defacto leader of the legislative appointees. A no vote yesterday. A no vote today and a no vote forever.

Before yesterdays meeting it was 5 in favor with 4 against and 5 undecided (Bulgaro was a no vote).

As of today I'd say it is 5 in favor 5 against (Skelos has spoken) and 3 undecided.

Dan Horwitz has his work cut out.

Why don't you guys get smart and pick Tina (you know who I'm talking about Dan)  It will be unanimous and she can do the job.  Of course the 2nd floor doesn't control her so maybe thats a non starter.

Until then its gridlock until someone gets caught doing something stupid (thats ment for you Uncle Vinny)

Tuesday, July 30, 2013


In todays WRGB6 news poll 96% of those who responded said they do not trust JJOKE

I'm not making this up . . . 96%


Who are the 4% Milgram and his family?

96% don't trust JJOKE

Pay attention Gary Lavine, Mitra Hormozi, George Weisman and anyone else on JJOKE that places any value on their reputation.


No wonder Pat Bulgaro resigned.  He knows what that 96% figure means.

It means when Gary Lavine suggests letting JJOKE keep a list of the identities of those who donate to organizations who JJOKE exempts from disclosure, the public is saying we don't trust you with that information.  We think you are going to give it to others.

It means the governor better start paying attention because JJOKE is his creation and by creaing a Moreland Commission to do the job JJOKE was formed for the Governor is part of the 96%, he doesn't trust JJOKE either.

Insider X has given me a tip that Larry Schwartz tried to get Skelos onboard for the Latitzia appointment as Executive Director.  Todays meeting proved Skelos is part of the 96% who don't trust JJOKE either.  No legislative appointees would vote for Latitzia and Horwitz needs to reload.

And careful observers noticed when Horwitz and Uncle Vinny tried to avoid a vote on tabling any exemptions from source of funding Renzi, Jacobs, Yaroshelvsy and Weismann all insisted on a public vote on the motion.  They are part of the 96% as well they don't trust Horwitz or Uncle Vinny.

And did anyone notice the animosity between Jacobs and Horwitz?  They don't like each other.

Insider X tells me Weismann can't stand Horwitz either.

JJOKE is coming apart at the seams.

Anyone want to bet on how long Horwitz puts up with this legislative rebellion?

I'm sure Pat Bulgaro realized by resigning he let us all know he is part of the 96% as well.

96%  that is an amazing number.

With just a little more work I think we can get the other 4% to see the light.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Another One bites the dust and one more reputation goes into the garbage can

So Pat Bulgaro has finally pulled the plug.

That took forever.

I advised Pat (and several other commissioners) to resign last summer.when it became obvious to me that JJOKE was going to be just another bad imitation of Elliot "Snookie" Spitzer's Public Integrity Commission.

Some took my advice quicker than others.

Some are still thinking about it.

And one says he can't resign, which generates a whole bunch of conspiracy theories for a guy like me.

But anyway I'm happy Pat is getting out with what is left of his once superb reputation.

The question I have for Pat, and I'll ask him in person is why did you stay as long as you did?

He had to know how badly JJOKE's actions or lack thereof reflected on him and yet he stayed.

I went thru thick and thin with Pat when he was the Chair of the old Lobby Commission, if he stayed at JJOKE there has to have been a reason.

And obviously at some point recently the cost to stay exceeded the cost to leave.

That means something happened in the last month or so that pushed Pat over the edge.  My bet it's the Latitzia appointment as executive director.  I heard the legislative appointees were being pressured or enticed, depending upon the circumstances.

Knowing Pat like I do either approach would be a mistake if he wanted out.

Maybe someday we will all learn the real reason.

Until then it's just a waiting game to see who leaves next and if Latitzia gets her appointment.

If nothing else Pat leaving before the meeting makes it easier (7 votes instead of 8 needed) if his resignation is effective after the meeting it gets tougher for Horwitz to muster the support he needs this meeting. 

JJOKE wrecking reputations for the last 2 years.

Try a little sunshine

JJOKE has a meeting tomorrow.

The agenda has not been posted but my vast network of insiders, spys and present and/or former commissioners and staffers tell me that the selection of the next executive director will be discussed in executive session.

I wonder will one of the commissioners make a motion to discuss the status of the search for the next executive director in public session?

Now that would go a long way to starting JJOKE down a different path.

I can almost guarantee that the vast majority of legislative appointees would love to see Horwitz explain why Latitzia Tagliafierro is his choice.

Horwitz could explain why all the other applicants have come up wanting in one way or another.

Horwitz could further explain that it has been 2 months since Biben left, it is almost 4 months since she announced she was resigning.

Even an average group of commissioners should have been able to recruit a decent executive director in that amount of time.

Hell I could do it in under a week even if you limited the field to those presently working for the executive branch.

Come on Horwitz admit I gave you a better name than Latitzia.  In fact why don't you share it with the other commissioners. . . I have.

Anyway if someone were to make that motion (hint hint Gary) I'm sure it would pass and a little sunshine might even seep in to the windowless star chamber they use for JJOKE meetings.

And then we can see what it will take to get Governor Cuomo's Moreland Commission to operate in the public eye.

After 6 years of failed ethics reforms you would think someone would finally realize you can't do this stuff in secret and expect a good result.

Cudos to Ken Lovett for starting to pull the curtain back on Regina Calcaterra and the Gov's Moreland Commission.  I wonder does Regina have to file a financial disclosure report?  Who is paying her and how much?  Does she have outside income?  What did she spend her campaign donations on? Will she look at the unreported lobbying activity that has occured with the state democratic party tv ads? With Yoko Ono and the Artists against Fracking. With Susan Lerner's source of funding disclosures? 

The fact that she asked Dick "dopey" Dadey for the lay of the land means it's going to take her both hands and a gps just to find her own rearend.

And while we are speaking of her rearend thats where the Moreland Commission SHOULD begin.  They should investigate all campaign, lobby and disclosure filings of members and staff before they start the do as we say not as we do investigations.  Just a thought.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

FORE . . .play

Well yet another case of sexual harassment by a member of the legislature is in the news.

It's weird but Susan Lerner and Dick Dadey haven't filed a complaint with JJOKE yet.

For that matter the gov has not said publicly that JJOKE should investigate.

If I was Vito Lopez I'd be claiming he was targeted for some reason other than his being a pig.

Remember I did warn you that if JJOKE started investigating sexual harassment under the Public Officers Law it would be a slippery slope to a rocky bottom.

There is supposed to be a JJOKE meeting next week to ram thru the new Executive Director vote maybe by then JJOKE can leak that they are investigating this new case of sexual harassment.

As an aside Insider X has returned and told me a very interesting tale.  As always I can not speak to the truth or veracity of the account but it is thought provoking.

Insider X claims the 2nd floor has a mole in the Assembly.  This mole is well placed to know what's going on and to report back to the 2nd floor.  The mole supposedly got caught up in the Lopez investigation and was represented by counsel with ties to the 2nd floor.  1 + 1 quickly added up to 2 for the mole and he got himself clear of the Lopez case.  Now Assembly secrets go straight to the 2nd floor.   Might explain how the most recent sexual harassment complaint that has not been investigated by JJOKE got to the media.  

Doesn't sound plausible to you?  Ask David Patterson if it could happen.

If Joe Bruno was smarter or less of an old school standup guy he'd learn a lesson and do the same thing.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

When it comes to Elliot Spitzer and whores, fuck is the only word that fits

Because I have the maturity of a 13 year old I took great pleasure in slipping in the word fuck in a comment to the capcon blog item about Spitzer (notice how many double entandres I was able to use so far).  The best part was it lasted, or stayed up on the blog for over an hour (more word play) until Casey Seilor noticed and deleted it (I thought those comments were moderated before they were posted)  Casey Sailor (as in swears like) then emailed me to warn me that if I used profanity again I would be kicked off the blog and be unable to have intercourse (written) with his readers in the future.  I responded "LOL like I give a fuck".  Casey Sailor responded "You've been warned"  Lets see how long it takes for me to get it on with his threat.

But it made me think, was the use of the term "fuck" really necessary when it came to describing what Spitzer did with the whore?  I mean I was pointing out how Spitzer violated the Public Officers Law by using the state plane to fly to Washington DC to"fill in the blank" with the whore.

Now words are important when applying a legal opinion to activity.  In this case Casey Sailor wrote that Spitzer was in the clear for using the state plane because COPI, the agency Spitzer and Joe Bruno created to get me out of government wrote an opinion that spells out what you can do as part of a trip using the state plane.  It says you don't have to reimburse the state for "eating, sleeping or being with family".

Now this provides me with a dilemma when choosing the term I used for what Spitzer did with the whore.  You see if he engaged in cunnilingus that could be considered "eating" if one were to use a coarse vulgar term for that activity, although I'm sure Casey wouldn't kick me off for using the term eating on his blog.  Then there is the word "sleeping"  I've checked the dictionary for synonyms for having intercourse and sure enough "sleeping" is one of them.  And lastly you have "being with family" and if you believe the reports that Spitzer was a dangerous customer because he insisted on not using a prophylactic (hard word to spell) or rubber he could easily claim the activity fit the exception since "being with family" is slang for pregnant.

So I chose fuck, it can not be confused with eating, sleeping or being with family in my opinion.  But for those of more delicate sensibilities, you know you folks who read Proust in the park, lets try some other words and see if you prefer how they sound.

Spitzer used the state plane to fly to Washington to make love to the whore

Spitzer used the state plane to fly to Washington to do it to the whore

Spitzer used the state plane to fly to Washington to have a go at it with the whore

Spitzer used the state plane to fly to Washington to bed the whore

Spitzer used the state plane to fly to Washington to mate with the whore

Spitzer used the state plane to fly to Washington to roll in the hay with the whore

Spitzer used the state plane to fly to Washington to get laid by the whore

Spitzer used the state plane to fly to Washington to be intimate with the whore

Spitzer used the state plane to fly to Washington to copulate with the whore

Spitzer used the state plane to fly to Washington to bang the whore

Spitzer used the state plane to fly to Washington to couple with the whore

Spitzer used the state plane to fly to Washington to have carnal knowledge of the whore

Spitzer used the state plane to fly to Washington to shag the whore

Spitzer used the state plane to fly to Washington to have coitus with the whore

Spitzer used the state plane to fly to Washington to bump uglies with the whore

Did you ever wonder why there are so many terms for the act Spitzer did with the whore?

At the end of the day I'm afraid I have to disagree with Casey, the only phrase that truly captures what Spitzer did, is fuck.  It's just a word Casey and I spelled it correctly.  You find it thruout literature.  And once you get past your puritan hangups you'll realize the larger point of my argument is correct, Spitzer violated the public officers law when he used the state plane to fly to Washington to fuck the whore.  And thats what is really important here.

As to your threat to kick me off your blog you are warned I'm going to figure out a way to use profanity on your blog and if I get kicked off it's no big deal I have my own blog and I can use any words I want.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Friday, July 12, 2013

Grab your umbrella

It’s been raining a lot lately and over the last few days I’ve spoken to some folks who told me it was raining but I think they were just pissing on me.

For example I had someone tell me that they were told the governor had instructed his Moreland Commission Executive Director to make sure the Working Family Party and Citizens Union was subpoenaed as part of the effort to clean up Albany.   I’m supposed to run to their defense and stick it to the gov.  Somehow this is good news for me?  First I like the gov’s style and have no desire to be on the other side of this guy in a fight.  He scares me.  Second I don’t do squat for free anymore write me a retainer check and we can talk otherwise good luck.

Then I spoke with JJOKE big shot Martin Levine.   I’m not sure why Martin was the one to call me since I left messages with Uncle Vinny’s niece Shari Calnero (who is in charge of education) and some other “lawyer of the day” whom I never heard of to answer a simple question.  Can you file the source of funding disclosure electronically?  I have a client that needs to do so but we can’t figure out where on the electronic form to do so.  Well Martin I guess was knowledgeable enough to answer the question, which begs another question why do you have this other two Jokesters if they can’t answer that question?  Anyway Martin told me you can’t file the source of funding electronically it has to be done on paper.   So I asked then that means once you file electronically you can do the source of funding on paper as an amendment after the 15th.  I got silence and then this profound statement “I guess so I’ve never thought about that” Yeah it’s been a year genius and you’ve never thought about that.  So I followed up with why haven’t you made the source of funding form available electronically?  And I got this rainstorm “well the regulations are not approved in final form”   so what you have the paper form using the emergency regs “yes but to change the electronic application would be an additional cost”  Here’s a suggestion fire all the incompetent lawyers at JJOKE and you would have plenty of money to update your system   IT’S BEEN OVER A YEAR WHAT A DISGRACE!!!!!!!!

Then to complete my rainstorm trifecta I heard from a JJOKE Commissioner.  Don’t be surprised I talk to more of them than you think.  And they call me I don’t call them.

This one wanted to know why I thought the JJOKE commissioners were not to be trusted.  I answered honestly that it was my opinion that they were not independent.  The commissioner disagreed and I then offered the following examples.  Did the commissioner know former ED Biben had an outside teaching job? Yes    Did the commission approve the outside employment thru a formal vote?   No they did not but why was that important?  To which I yelled  BECAUSE YOUR OWN REGULATIONS REQUIRE IT.  Will the commission investigate Biben’s violation of the Public Officer’s Law as a result?  Point made.

Next since you think the commission should be looking at the root cause of Albany corruption will you investigate Biben’s improper expense reimbursement during the months she lived and worked in NYC although there was no NYC office?  Answer we were told she didn’t have any.   Well I have the records from the Controller’s office would you like them to commence your investigation? Silence  point made.

Then to divert me I’m sure the commissioner asked what I thought about the Moreland Commission.  My answer was a question why do we need Moreland and JJOKE?  Isn’t one failed ethics agency enough? Point made

And then we wrapped up with a discussion about the next Executive Director of JJOKE.  This commissioner could not answer if they thought Latitia Tagliafierro was qualified for the job (your job just got harder Mr. Horwitz)  I suggested that at the next meeting the commission discuss the job search in public  I even offered to get the other 7 votes if this commissioner made that motion .  Point made  And by the way I gave this commissioner the name of the person who is qualified and wants the job but can’t apply since she already works for the administration and the 2nd floor really really wants Latitia.

Moral of the story to those that feel the urge to talk to me   Don’t piss on me and tell me it’s raining.  And if you come looking to change my mind about ethics in Albany bring your lunch because it’s going to take awhile

Friday, July 5, 2013

Legitimate Moreland questions

There are a few people in this town who I listen to carefully when they talk about ethics.

Fred LeBrun for example usually has a very good ear for what's really going on.

Gary Lavine and Pat Bulgaro were folks who I thought were truly smart people when it came to the reality of how Albany works, my opinion of both has become tarnished as a result of their service on JJOKE.  I still would pick up the phone if they called but I'd be leery of their motives now.

Darren Dopp, stop laughing, Darren has experienced Albany's corruption first hand and how the ethics agencies are used to protect and punish.  In addition he talks to everyone, both in the media and in government, some of them, if you believe Darren, even listen to him.  More importantly Darren gets how flawed the media is when it comes to reporting on ethics so he is a very valuable tool and sounding board.  And there is no better way to plant an ethics story in Albany then to swear Darren to secrecy and then tell him a rumor.  It's a bulletproof way to get a story in the media.

There are others but not many.  One of them called me after the gov announced the Moreland Commission to Investigate Public Corruption (I wonder what acronym the media will come up with? CIPC . . . Simpsee (phonetic) . . . Siptee . . . Sip the tee . . . Drink the coolaid . . . Coolaid?  best I could do on short notice I'll keep working on it JJOKE took awhile too)  This individual may be one of the smartest people out there when it comes to Albany corruption, he doesn't just talk the talk he has walked the walk.  So when he had some questions I paid attention.

His questions are as follows:

1.  Why do all the DA's on the panel need the jurisdiction of a Moreland Commission? 
2.   Doesn't a DA have independent jurisdiction to investigate activity in there own county?
3.  Why haven't these DA's been bringing political corruption cases themselves? why has it been the feds?
4.  Shouldn't David Soares explain why as the DA of Albany County he has been unable to put the brakes on corruption at the state capital?
5.  Will there be public meetings where these law enforcement allstars will be available to answer questions about cases they are involved in?
6.   How do you make a complaint?
7.   Will they keep case records for review after they are done so we can see what they did or did not do?
8.  How many cases of political corruption have these DA's made in their careers?
9.  Did anyone notice the connection a few of these members had to Joe Bruno? Pat Barrett and William Fitzpatrick were Glenn Suddaby's political patrons, Suddaby was the USAttorney that stalled the Bruno case until he got his judgeship.  Maybe the Moreland members can have a private conversation with Barrett and find out what role he really played in the Bruno case (there has to be a reason Joe got so pissed did he think he got doublecrossed? was the fix in? those are my questions)


WHY DO WE NEED JCOPE AND ITS $4 million dollar budget if the Moreland Commission is doing the work JJOKE already is empowered to do?

That last one is a great question.

Let me add to it will the governor now admit his last ethics reform, JJOKE, has been proven to be a complete failure?

Comeon gov sack up, man up, bite the bullet and show some backbone and admit JJOKE was a failure.  It's the elephant in the room.  And by the way it wasn't the idea of JJOKE that was the failure it was the people you selected to run it.

CIPC? more like oopsie

Monday, July 1, 2013

Be careful with that first step says Skelos

A legislative body can also do things we feel are appropriate,” Skelos, R-Long Island, said on “The Capitol Pressroom.” “If this is just aimed at the Legislature, I think that would be inappropriate. Certainly, the governor runs for office. He’s raised close to $30 million in his campaign committee. "… Everybody should be cautious here when they move forward"

Exactly what does Senator Skelos think everyone should be cautious of?

A plain reading would lead a reasonable person to the conclusion that Senator Skelos believes the governor may have campaign finance transgressions of his own which a partisan senate hearing could disclose.

But if that was the case Skelos should disclose what he knows about the governor's campaign accounts immediately to the appropriate law enforcement body.

Just as the governor should disclose any information he has that he is basing his call for a Moreland Commission on.

Now either the governor and Skelos know something that they are innapropriately keeping from the public about corruption in Albany, in which case I'm sure JJOKE will investigate and charge them with violations of the Public Officer's Law (I know stop laughing) or

They have no actual knowledge of corruption related to the State Board of Elections BUT THINK IT EXISTS WITHOUT EVIDENCE  which in my opinion is worse than hiding the actual corruption for later use as leverage.

Think about the spot the governor and Skelos have placed themselves in if only a reporter would ask them the question "What do you know about campaign corruption and why haven't you reported it?"